Taxis in Morocco are a very popular and affordable way to commute daily inside and between cities. Taxi prices are low, and this transport is more convenient than overcrowded public buses, that often go without a schedule, and don’t have air conditioning. However, if you don’t know the basic rules of dealing with taxis drivers, the ride can cost a fortune.
Types of taxis in Morocco
There are two types of taxis in Morocco: the small ones called a petite taxi, and the big ones called a grand taxi. Petite taxis can sit up to 3 people. If you take the small taxi alone, the driver might pick up other passengers going the same direction. Petite taxis are only for local city traffic; they cannot take you outside the city borders.
Grand taxi can take anywhere inside the city as well as outside the city. It can seat up to 6 passengers, 4 in the back seats and two in front next to the driver. It is a shared vehicle, and you only pay for your place. If you see a big taxi with an empty seat, stop it and ask what direction the driver is going. Each big taxi driver has a fixed route to a set destination. Often it’s only 5 DH per seat no matter the distance inside Marrakech.
Of course, if the big taxi is empty, the driver can also take you to the specific address. However, you will have to pay for much more than taking a small taxi. So if you need to reach a particular place, when stopping taxi, make sure it’s not the big taxi.
GRAND TAXI FOR BIG CITIES
Grand taxis are permitted to travel outside of the city limits. You can take the big taxi, e.g. from Marrakech to Agadir etc. These taxis can be found only in specific parking places.
E.g. in Marrakech, for destinations close to the city, like Ourika Valley, Agafay, the taxis are waiting in the Medina, in the parking close to the Kasbah entrance. For orientation, find a hotel “Villa Verde”, taxis are in front of it. In this link, I added the grand taxi parking coordinates.
If you want to reach other Moroccan cities, go to the grand taxi parking place close to the Bab Doukalla bus station. All taxi drivers know this place. How does it work? You go to the taxis parking, and someone will ask where are you going. Then, it will lead you to the right taxi driver. After the driver collects at least 4 passengers, you are ready to go. Pay only for your seat. Prices are fixed.
As in the whole world, taxi prices in Morocco are fixed per kilometre and you pay according to the meter. However, taxi drivers in Morocco often forget to turn on the meter or complain it’s not working. You also have to pay the taxi in cash and not a credit card.
Not in all cities, but if the taxi driver sees tourists, he will probably try to rip you off. Never happened to me in Casablanca, Rabat, but in the Marrakech – all the time. In Essaouira, inside the city taxi prices are fixed – 7 DH no matter where you need to go.
All airports in Morocco has fixed taxi prices to the city centres. However, commuting from Marrakech airport to the city center is another topic, you can read about it in my post How to get from Marrakech airport to the city center .
MARRAKECH TAXIS – DIFFERENT RULES
Taxi drivers in Marrakech are so different from other towns. They don’t like to turn on the meter nor to give a fair price. The minimum price for the ride is 7 MAD, no matter what distance you did. At night, the tariff is higher.
The most important rule for getting a taxi in Marrakech – make sure the meter is on. If not, bargain the price before. To go from Marrakech train station to the Jemaa el-Fnaa square cost around 25 MAD (2 euros). From Carre Eden shopping mall to Jemaa el-Fnaa, around 10 MAD.
Some taxi drivers refuse to use the meter unless you insist; then, take another taxi willing to use the meter. If the taxi driver is scamming you, refuse to pay. Taxi drivers can’t even prove you had a ride because the meter was not on.
In my case, 70 % of taxi drivers in Marrakech don’t turn on the meter. I always need to ask and bargain. What really helped me learn how to say in Darija (local dialect) is that I am not a tourist.
Learn these phrases and you will easily get the taximeter or the local price. In Morocco, for the taximeter (counter for a taxi) is used the French word Compteur, if you can’t pronounce it, say Counter.
- Wash l’Compteur khdam? Is the meter working?
- Shhal? How much?
- Bzef, Khou-ya! Expensive, brother!
- Ana mashi tourist, sakna f Marrakch, Khou-ya!I’m not a tourist, I live in Marrakech, My brother!
p.s. “Khou-ya” in Darija means “My brother”, and it’s used almost all the time directing to any (younger) man, even if you see him for the first time. You can say “Khou-ya” to a taxi driver, waiter and anyone in an informal environment.
In Morocco, ride-sharing apps are not very popular. Stopping taxi in the street is still the most common way. Due to protests, Uber had to shut down its services in 2018. For only Rabat and Casablanca, you can use the Careem app. In Marrakech, try Roby or Heetch apps.
Honestly, I never use ride-sharing apps and prefer calling taxi vert services. In Marrakech, you can call 0524 40 94 99, and the dispatch operator will send you the taxi. There is a fixed service fee of 15 MAD (more at night) plus the meter fee. Before stepping into the called taxi, make sure it has a special taxi vert sticker on the windscreen. The taxi vert driver must have the meter on.
Instead of a taxi, you can also use horse-drawn carriages called Calèches. The short city tour cost around 150 MAD. Or, use the old-school tuk-tuk. It costs around 40 MAD inside the Medina / 60 MAD outside the Medina.
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